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Banksy: peace for paris

Disclaimer: This post contains spoilers for the TV show “The Wire”. And also some colourful language, such as you might expect when talking about terrorist bastards.

This week has been a bad one for the world. Unless, of course, you happen to be a giant terrorist asshole. Terror attacks in Beirut, Baghdad, and the deadliest attack in Paris since World War 2 have sent the world reeling. The group known by many acronyms — ISIS, ISIL, or what I’ll refer to in this post as Daesh, has claimed ‘responsibility’ (if such a word could even be used) for all three attacks.

All this has happened against a backdrop of unprecedented humanitarian crisis, as hundreds of thousands of refugees continue to flee Syria’s deadly civil war. Western governments are debating how they can cope with what they’ve dubbed a “migrant crisis”, as though the problem only started when desperate refugees started showing up in Europe. It happened on the eve of the G20 summit in Antayla, Turkey, and in the lead-up to a huge global summit on climate change taking place in Paris.

The responses to the attack, in typical format, have followed the Rorschach Test pattern; people see in tragedy what they want to see. More foreign aid. Less foreign aid. More military intervention. Less military intervention. More solidarity with refugees. Close our borders to refugees. It’s about Islam. It’s not about Islam. And so on, and so forth. French president Francois Hollande has taken a hard line, promising military strikes against Daesh, closing of borders, and crackdowns all around.

Everyone has an opinion on how to fight this so-called “war on terror”. But is this really a “war”?

It strikes me that this so-called “war on terror” bears a lot of resemblance to another misnomer: the so-called “war on drugs”.

Sure, this isn’t exactly an original observation. Plenty of people have pointed this out in analysis after analysis. But, other than depressingly similar tactics, sources of funding and consequences, these two so-called wars parallel each other in other ways. Here are just a few:

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No, not the Jews (despite what most of the Mideast believes)… the Islamists:

A suicide car bomber blew himself up outside a Shi’ite mosque north of Baghdad on Friday, killing 11 and wounding 24, the latest attack in a three-day surge of violence that has killed more than 200 people.

The blast came two days after Iraq’s al Qaeda leader, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, declared an all-out war on the country’s Shi’ite Muslim majority.

Iraqi police Captain Saed Ahmed said the bomb went off outside the Great Prophet mosque in Tuz Khurmatu, a mixed Sunni and Shi’ite town 160 km (100 miles) north of the capital, as worshippers were emerging from prayers on the Muslim holy day.

He said a Saudi wearing an explosives-laden belt, who was apparently working with the bomber, was arrested soon after.

Militants have frequently attacked Shi’ite mosques over the past 18 months in an apparent attempt to goad Iraq’s Shi’ite majority into retaliation and spark a sectarian civil war with the Sunni Arab minority, once dominant under Saddam Hussein.

The mass hysteria caused at the mere suggestion that a Jewish person dares to even set foot near a Muslim holy spot is enough to cause war. And yet, the terrorists frequently stockpile weapons in mosques, attack mosques of their enemies, and destory holy places belonging to pretty much every religion. Why is it that nobody even blinked at the torching of synagogues in former Gaza settlements by Palestinians… and yet could you even fathom the world’s outcry if a Jewish person so much as dropped a speck of dirt in a mosque?


Horrific bombing in Iraq


With the daily news so dismal from Iraq, it’s hard for anything to shock us anymore. We dismiss bombings, shootings and kidnappings as routine. It’s like we’ve lost the capacity for outrage. But stories about children still have the capacity to jolt even the most cynical among us. And today, 34 children are dead, because […]

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UN targeted in Iraq again


There’s been another suicide bombing targeting the UN in Iraq: “This incident today once again underlines that Iraq remains a war zone and a high risk environment, particularly for those working to improve the lives of the Iraqi people,” Kevin Kennedy, the senior U.N. official in Baghdad, said in a statement read out by Paradela […]

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Steyn on UN bombing in Iraq


Mark Steyn on the UN bombing in Baghdad: At the moment, there’s only one hyperpower (the United States), one great power (the United Kingdom) and one regional power (Australia) that are serious about the threat of Islamist terrorism. There’s also Israel, of course, but Israel’s disinclination to have its bus passengers blown to smithereens is […]

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UN headquarters bombed in Baghdad


The bombing of the U.N. headquarters in Baghdad is proof of just how bad things have gotten on the ground in Iraq. At least one person was killed and over 30 injured, including some high-level U.N. officials. Logic would dictate that the Saddam-loyalist factions still active in Iraq would want to direct their anger at […]

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The end of the beginning


Today’s been quite a day, as the Americans and coalition forces made themselves at home in Baghdad, celebrating the end of Saddam Hussein’s regime. I can’t help thinking of Churchill’s famous words in 1942 though: “Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the […]

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